Living the Driven Life, Episode 164 (July 18-July 24, 2021): The good weeks keep coming!

Nother decent week, all in all.

Sunday:

Solid A day! Went out to eat and got one more section done of the project I’m working on, I have about 9 more to go, so at a rate of a section a day I should be done by early next week. w00t!

Monday:

Nice, today gets an A. Didn’t go out, but did get a lot of work done and finished 2 sections, about 7 more to go.

Tuesday:

A- day. Got one more section out of the way, 6 to go. Those are gonna be more involved though, not sure how long they’ll take. Also FINALLY got the last couple of achievements in Curse of the Moon 2, tho thats not much of a big deal.

Wednesday:

A- day, despite getting no work done at all. While I was sleeping, a relative got involved in some car trouble so I had to go out and help them after having been woken up by their call. I got very little sleep so I wasnt productive for the rest of the day, but at least I resolved the car situation well enough–my relative’s machine was working safely and I managed to get them to where they needed to be in time, which was VERY lucky, so overall I consider this day a win. Just gonna :zzz: good tonight hopefully…

Thursday:

Nice day! Next chapter of Monster No. 8’s finally out. To deal with the stronger monsters, Commander Shinomiya assigns Kafka to Gen Narumi’s unit. Narumi himself doesn’t trust Kafka and wants to turn him into a weapon, but Kafka’s earnestness…doesn’t quite win him over, but convinces him to give Kafka a chance.

Aside from that, I got a good chunk of writing done. Should be done with my project–like I said I started on a different one, it’s the manosphere essay I’ve been thinking of–early next week!

Friday:

Kinda stressful day…went out to Little Lamb and Wal-Mart, but was stressed out due to long lines at both, but at least I managed to get a meal and what I needed in the end. After that I wrote some more, so that’s good. A- in the end.

SATURDAY:

Nice, today gets a solid A! Ate some Pho 54 then went home and wrote. Nice!

THINGS I HAD TO FINISH THIS WEEK:

Nothing really.

THINGS I HAVE TO DO NEXT WEEK

Nothing really, just relax!

EATAN:

 

WATCHAN:

Nothin.

PLAYAN:

Got the last trophies in Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night and Curse of the Moon, but that’s all.

BOOK READAN:

Come With Me by Ronald Malfi. This story revolves around a regular guy whose wife is murdered in a mass shooting (Mr. Malfi was thinking of current events, and indeed the book is dedicated to a friend of his who tragically died in a real shooting in 2018). The protagonist, Aaron Decker, has a hard enough time dealing with grief on his own, but then he finds a single receipt for a stay at a motel she never told him about. He goes and investigates, wanting some closure if his wife had been cheating on him, but he soon finds she wasn’t, but she did have a secret life indeed, and with what seems to be some entity pushing him on–his wife’s ghost or something else, not made clear till the end–Aaron is drawn to solve the mystery of her life.

I went from disliking to loving to kinda disliking to really liking this book. Malfi’s in standard high form, his writing literary and the way he draws the characters (most of them residents and policemen of small, rural towns in Pennsylvania and a couple other states) very skillful, they’re all individuals with believable voices. My initial problem was that despite the literary style, the story dragged at first. It’s written in quasi second person, like Aaron is telling the story to his dead wife, addressing her as “you,” and so much of the beginning is taken up by his ruminating on the grief of his loss. Understandable, sure, but I wanted to get to the main story hook (unraveling the mystery behind her trip) and it took so long to get there I was bored and felt the protag’s grief annoying rather than sympathetic.

Once he gets to solving the mystery and checking out the hotel, though, things really get electric, and I was delighted with how Malfi gradually teased out the mystery, peppered in bits of supernatural hints here and there, and showed how Decker’s quest gradually drew him closer and closer to what his wife sought–I dont wanna spoil anything else!

Unfortunately, I thought the very end, where the “bad guy” was revealed, was very sudden and felt cheap, almost like a deus ex machina. While it does involve a callback to the beginning of the book (again, no spoilers), there’s so little foreshadowing and also the way the protag finds out the truth is so “lucky” the whole thing felt a little cheap.

However, the final confrontation was pretty well written, with a supernatural element coming into play at the very end of it, and then after that, there is a REALLY surprising twist I did NOT see coming–no spoilers, but the ghostly hand helping Decker throughout the story was NOT who I thought it was, which was very very cool. That twist reminded me of Skullbelly, which is my fave Malfi story.

So in the end, this gets 4 stars. Despite its problems, I’m happy with what I got for the price.

MANGA READAN:

Aside from Kaiju No. 8 as I described above, another manga from the author of Knight’s and Magic, “A Story about a Droid.” It’s another Twitter series rather than a full manga, but it concerns a combat droid in a post-apocalyptic future who adopts a human boy and raises him as his mother, it’s sooo cute. Check it out here:

https://mangadex.org/title/4bbbcf1a-f207-4d25-8be0-f08633b0947e

(Mangadex is back up in early access and its legit, but if you have Verizon internet you may have to use a different provider to get to it because Verizon doesn’t like the site for some reason)

WRITAN:

Got a very decent bit of work done on one of my projects, might be able to get it out next week!

BUCKET LIST PROGRESS

1: Read the end of Girl Genius. At least I got to see Lucrezia kicked out of Agatha’s mind, so that’s something.

2: Play Front Mission 5.

3: Play Brigandine: Grand Edition. I think I’ll work on these emulation related things when I get a new computer–a new deskie, I mean.

4: Finish up a second big project…

5: Maybe finish up a 3rd big project related to Berserk.

6: Finish a FOURTH big project I’ve had thoughts about for a while. Won’t say much more about it other than it involves Visual Novels.

7: *maybe* finish up a fic I’ve always wanted to put out. But this is really extra.

8: Maybe do something with Wayward Son I’ve wanted to do for a while, but also extra.

9: Maybe write one last long manosphere essay – almost done

10: Obviously, get all my affairs in order–will, etc.

Another good week, w00t w00t. A decent chunk of work done, I’m pretty happy!

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